Ethical fashion has gotten a lot of talk in the past few years and with good reason. As opposed to fast fashion that promotes a non-sustainable environment, ethical fashion helps people and promotes healthy living principles. From many points of view, ethical fashion may be the future and we are here to prepare you for it. Read on to understand the difference between fast and ethical fashion and to learn why sustainability is important.

Fast Fashion vs. Ethical Fashion

If you are not familiar with fast fashion, just think about fast food. After all, this is where the term comes from. Fast food may be tasty, but it’s not healthy. Besides harming your organism, it also harms local farmers and food producers who can’t keep with the pace that fast food proposes. Fast fashion is the equivalent of fast food in the fashion world.

Mass-produced garments and jewelry may look nice at some point, but that’s it. Most of them will last less than a couple of months. It is also a matter of wearing what many other people are wearing. You are a unique individual and your clothes and jewelry should reflect that. Because of fast fashion, many people look as if they are wearing uniforms. But there are the least of the concerns when it comes to fast fashion.

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The Problems of Fast Fashion

The greatest concerns and the environment and the developing communities. The chemical fertilizers and insecticide used for vast cotton plantations designed to support the mass production of clothes end up poisoning the soil. And even though we are facing a water shortage in many countries, worldwide cotton production is using a lot of water. Likewise, water gets polluted and becomes undrinkable in areas where the gold mining industry is active. You see, mining for gold does not only scar the surface of the Earth, but it also pollutes the water because of the cyanide used in the process.

And when it comes to developing communities, many brands are using underpaid and child labor to keep the costs of production low so that people can buy T-shirts for a couple of bucks. In the jewelry industry, diamond mining has destroyed many communities, fuelling conflict and corruption. As you can see, there are many issues with fast fashion. Thankfully, we now have an alternative – ethical fashion.

What Is Ethical Fashion?

There are three principles of ethical fashion:

  • Environment – friendly
  • Animal – cruelty – free
  • Social good

Keep on reading to find out more about these principles and see if your favorite brands respect them.

Ethical Fashion Doesn’t Come at the Expense of Our Planet

You probably know that the fashion industry is the second biggest polluting industry in the world. Ethical fashion plans to change that. By carefully considering the preservation of the environment, ethical fashion brands manage to produce beautiful garments and jewelry. Clothing brands that are environmentally-friendly use organic fibers that don’t require so much water to grow and don’t need chemicals. The clothes are produced so that they last longer and the people don’t need to always buy new clothes. Some brands are also using recycled materials to promote a sustainable model.

ethical fashion

One of these brands is Ana Luisa. All our solid gold and silver jewelry is handcrafted of recycled gold and silver. This way, we breathe new life into old pieces and manage to reduce the amount of gold mining needed to produce the jewelry.

No Animals Were Harmed in the Process

The fashion industry is also harmful to animals. After all, if we think about it, fashion is the main reason why some species are close to extinction now. People have always hunted animals for furs. And even if we are not talking about close-to-extinction species, a genuine fur coat involves a lot of animal cruelty. And don’t get us started on leather jackets, shoes and other garments, including leather jewelry.

Ethical fashion proposes a new alternative where we use materials that don’t come from animals. Thankfully, technology has evolved and we really don’t need animal products for clothes now. Faux-fur coats and faux-leather jackets or shoes look just as good. Besides, they can last just as long and you can feel good about wearing them and promoting a strong ethical fashion principle.

Fair-Trade Garment & Social Good

Another important aspect of ethical fashion is the aspect of social good. In the fast-fashion world, there is a lot of abuse happening. A lot of brands are using underpaid labor in developing countries to keep the price tag minimal. Some of them are even using child labor. At the opposite pole, ethical fashion promotes good working conditions, fair wages, and fair trade.

This is one of the reasons why, at Ana Luisa, all the plating is done in-house for our gold-dipped jewelry.  For our diamond jewelry, we use lab-grown diamonds. These are perfectly traceable, clean diamonds that have the same qualities as mined diamonds but don’t come at the expense of developing communities around the world. Moreover, with the help of influencers who are focused on social good and sustainability, we design special jewelry pieces that give back to NGOs dealing with social issues.

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In other words, ethical fashion is about taking into consideration how the garments you are wearing were created, from the materials used to the people crafting them. By thinking about these things and choosing ethical fashion brands we can really make a difference. If you want to check out Ana Luisa’s collections of sustainable jewelry, visit Ana Luisa online jewelry shop.

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Ruxandra is a fashion blogger who teaches fashion stumped twenty to thirty somethings how to shop their jewelry boxes for polished new ensembles. Her work has been featured in Vogue, Fashionista, Nylon, and Refinery29.